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What is the significance of 2 Chronicles 7:12–14?

The Lord says to Solomon, “When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command the locust to devour the land, or send pestilence among my people, if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

This well-known verse describes the Lord’s willingness to reverse judgment in the light of people’s repentance (cf. Jonah 4:2; Joel 2:13–14). When God judges his people by shutting up the heavens, he is willing to alter his course of action, relent from his punishment, and heal the people if they will pray, seek his face, and turn from their wicked ways. This is a picture of a God who is supremely responsive to the ever-changing circumstances of life in which free creatures are involved, not the picture of a God who eternally knows reality as a frozen block of unalterable facts.

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